Teaching in italian
Subject area
Reference degree course
Course type
Master's Degree
Teaching hours
Frontal Hours: 42.0
Academic year
Year taught
Course year
Reference professor for teaching

Teaching description

there are no specific requirements for course attendance

The so-called "digital dissemination" of cultural heritage is an area that stands at the crossroads of several issues characteristic of the contemporary world. It responds to imperatives of different origins, some of them even contradictory, but which in any case must be brought together in a coherent framework.

The course will attempt to meet this imperative, first of all by placing the theme of cultural heritage in the theoretical framework of knowledge goods, thus defining its peculiarities in a now relatively well-known context of digital transformation of the more general field of knowledge, of how it is constructed, how it is transmitted, how it is preserved.

Subsequently, we will try to understand the specific reasons that impose "digital dissemination" as an indispensable tool, also in relation to the needs of physical preservation of the heritage, for a proper management of cultural heritage in a long-term perspective.

Finally, we will review the issue of participatory practices, particularly within the field of cultural heritage, examining the technological and non-technological solutions that allow its development, with a particular eye to the experiences of overseas museums.

The student must develop the tools that allow them to orient themselves in the world of digital tools, especially according to the relationship between cultural heritage and the public. The theme will be related to a rigorous framework of the concept of cultural heritage and commons

traditional lectures or via the teams platform

Oral exam.

Evaluation criteria:

•          Level of learning of the topics;

•          Quality of exposition, competence in the use of specialised lexicon, efficacy, clarity.

•          Development of a critical reflection on the theme of cultural heritage and its relation to society

•          Ability to present an original point of view on cultural heritage.

The student will be evaluated on the basis of the content presented, formal correctness, and the ability to argue their case. Innovative points of view will be encouraged, but the student must be able to support them dialectically

Digital practices in the humanities have a long history but only in more recent times have they opened up to a specific topic, that of the so-called "digital dissemination" of cultural heritage,

This has happened for various reasons that sum up many of the challenges of the contemporary world, some of them even contradictory.  An eloquent framework of these issues is well defined by the Faro Convention. Just as the Convention seeks to define a coherent framework even in the presence of divergent instances, so the course will seek to systematize all these elements through a series of theoretical stages

The first step will be to analyze the issue of cultural heritage within the theoretical framework of knowledge goods (Hess, Ostrom 2007; Mattei 2011). Today, knowledge goods are included in a context that is now quite defined, also in relation to the changes induced by digital technologies, as well as its peculiarities. Even if there are no concrete proposals to face globally these new horizons, it seems clear, and will be analyzed during the lessons, how the transformation of the modes of construction, transmission and preservation of knowledge is now at an advanced stage. A specific in-depth study will concern the peculiarities of cultural goods that, compared to other forms of knowledge goods have their own strengths and weaknesses (McGimsey 1972, Moshenska 2017, Cauvin 2016).

From these considerations we will therefore move on to the second element under analysis, because the specific reasons that make "digital dissemination" a central tool that, in addition to disseminating knowledge in itself, allows to meet the needs of physical preservation of the assets, are related to a proper management of cultural heritage in a long-term perspective. In fact, a correct and effective dissemination serves to keep the values related to cultural heritage rooted within society and thus allow society itself to bear the costs that are generated by this heritage (Montella 2016).

For this dissemination to be successful, a third point must be considered: there can be no virtuous relationship between cultural heritage and society outside a participatory framework. A section will be dedicated to these practices, with specific insights in the field of cultural heritage. It will be important to examine the solutions that allow its development, with a particular eye to the museum experiences overseas. It will also focus on the fact that such solutions do not necessarily have to be high-tech to be effective but must be based on a clear analysis of context (Simon 2010; Ford 2011; Owens 2012).

M. Terras, J. Nyhan, E. Vanhoutte (eds), Defining Digital Humanities. A Reader (2013), in part. Cap. 21

S. Schreibman; R. Siemens; J. Unsworth (eds). A New Companion to Digital Humanities. (2015), cap. 1, 2, 4, 14, 29.

U. Mattei, Beni comuni. Un manifesto (2011)

Ch. Hess and E.Ostrom, Understanding Knowledge as a Commons. From Theory to Practice (2007), cap. 1, 3, 11

Ch. McGimsey, Public Archaeology (1972), pp. 5-45

G. Hardin, The Tragedy of the Commons (1968)

M. Montella, Economia e gestione dell’eredità culturale (2016), in part. pp. 3-14

G. Moshenska (ed.) Key concepts in public archaeology (2017) cap. 1, 5

Th. Cauvin, Public History: A Textbook of Practice (2016) introduzione e cap. 8

W.Benjamin, The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction

P.Valéry, The conquest of ubiquity

J. Howe, The Rise of Crowdsourcing (2006)

T.Owens, The Crowd and The Library (2012)

T.Owens, Human Computation and Wisdom of Crowds in Cultural Heritage (2012)

P.Ford, The Web Is a Customer Service Medium (2011)

N.Simon, The participatory Museum (2010)

D. Quaranta, Surfing con Satoshi. Arte, blockchain e NFT. Postmedia books 2021

First Semester (dal 19/09/2022 al 13/01/2023)

Exam type

Type of assessment
Oral - Final grade

Course timetable

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